Monday, December 19, 2011

A Wedding and a Birthday

Saturday Dec. 17th my niece got married and my son turned 13!
 My two daughters and their cousin at the wedding luncheon
 My two daughters and their two cousins at the wedding breakfast
 Me and my mom at the wedding breakfast. She came out for Thanksgiving and wasn't going to be able to come to the wedding, but the groom surprised us all and won our hearts by flying her out.
 My big brother and his wife came with one of their sons. It was so fun to have them there.
                      The beautiful bridesmaids. My two daughters are on the far right.
 The bride and her maids at the reception
                  The proud mom and dad dancing at the reception
              The two proud grandmothers of the bride at the reception
                      The bride and her brother dancing at the reception
 My husband and my mom. the photographer told him to hide his "sausage" fingers in the family photo so he's purposely showing them here.
                   My oldest daughter and her friend Andrew
                My younger daughter dancing with her dad
                 Me, the birthday boy and his cousin at the reception
                           My mom, the groom, and my sister at the brunch
My mom, my sister and me at the brunch
The proud parents of the bride

Me resting my sore back and my mom resting her sore leg at the reception.

All in all it was a joyous weekend of celebrations with family. What could be better than that?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Merry Little Christmas pictures and video of performance

Clink on the link below if you want to watch the video:

                                           Wingers Performance 

This is Scott Graves and me performing at the Wingers open mic night. Luckily he was playing with me so that when I messed up no one heard it!

 Gotta lean into that mic a little more to be heard over the background noise!

 Finally, a smile!

 It was fun to have my cute daughters and lovely sister there.
Here's the whole gang of family and friends who came: my two daughters, my son who's not in the picture but probably standing and watching the performers, My sister and her hubby, my two awesome writer friends Letitia and Rose (Rose took the pic and I think Ava is hiding behind my daughter) and my sweet hubby who came straight from the airport and ran to get there on time. Now that's love!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

New Christmas song and upcoming Christmas performance

I was asked to write another song this year for a Christmas program at church. The theme is how we become stronger by weathering the storms of life and how sometimes our most difficult trials can turn out to be our greatest gifts. Here are the words I came up with.

Snow Flakes

Frozen Flakes flutter down from the sky
Filling the air with a flurry of white
Before me a mountain looms high and steep
I don't know if I can climb this peak

When snow flakes fall and heart aches call
When dark clouds hide the sun
When winter winds blow and silent tears flow
You can always run
To the one who makes rainbows from rain
He creates joy out of pain
When snowflakes fall and heartaches call

If you're lost he'll lead you by the hand
if you stumble and fall he'll help you stand
if you are stranded out in the cold
He'll find and gather you into his fold


You may pray that he takes it all away
But sometimes the greatest gifts
come from ploughing through the deepest drifts


Also, I'll be performing a couple of Christmas songs on Saturday the 10th at 8:00 at Wingers in West Valley. If you'd like to enjoy a night of all-you-can-eat wings and Christmas music, come and join us!

Monday, November 14, 2011

What is success?

I've been thinking a lot about the definition of success this week since my son's little league football team lost the championship game by one touch down near the end of the game. Did that mean they're losers? Does success mean being the best or winning?

I don't think so. This team beat them by three touchdowns in a previous game and in this game our team did much better and gave them a real run for their money. They were almost tied until the end (plus the reps favored the other team and didn't give us and extra point we earned). Anyway, the boys played hard and did their best and they made it to the championship. To me that is a huge success and they can be proud and feel good.

I think any improvement we make is a success. I may not have published a novel yet, but I've written and revised several and they get better each time. I also still have an editor interested in one of them. As long as I keep plugging away and not giving up, I'm succeeding. Even when I don't meet my writing goals for the year, or month or week, I'm still writing a little everyday.

I've decided next year not to have any goals for my writing other than writing five days a week for an hour or two, which I do pretty well, and sending my manuscripts out to agents.  I sometimes get discouraged if I set my goals too high or make them too rigid, and then I feel like I've failed if I don't meet them, when I've actually accomplished quite a bit.

So here's to success.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Things I'm thankful for this month

1. My son's football team won their first playoff game in the snow and they are playing for the championship next week.
2. My mom is coming for Thanksgiving. I can't wait to taste her homemade apple pie. The best in the world. Flaky crust. Apples not to hard or soft and just the right sweetness and tartness. Mmm!
3. It's my husband's birthday
4. The last Twilight movie is coming out. I didn't finish the last book 'cuz I figured out the ending before I got there, but I plan to see the movie.
5. Ally Condie's new novel Crossed came out

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


No I didn't misspell NanoWriMo in my title, and yes, I am going to try doing NanoWriMo this month, but not the typical 50,000 words. For me that's too much of a challenge. I only wrote 300 some words the first day. My goal for NanaWriMo this year is to finish my WIP and come up with an outline and summary for a new novel. That's more doable and helpful for me. That way I won't give up before I even start because it's too much. How about you? Are you doing NanoWriMo or NanoWriNo?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Contest to win a critique from editor Stacy Whitman

Click on the link above for details on how to win a free 10-page critique from Editor Stacy Whitman of Tu publishing and read comment on the fascinating interview about Karen Sandler, author of Tankborn.

Fall Family Fun

I love fall. The days this week have been perfect. Sunny and cool. Yesterday was a great day. My son's football team won his game against the second best team in his division. Next week they play the number one team. They have a good chance of beating them.

Our family of five also took a walk up in the canyons at the Temple Quarry to see the fall colors and take some pictures. Then we went home and had some halloween cupcakes and cookies and watched Hocus Pocus. What are some of your fun fall family traditions?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Kizzy the Schnoodle

This is kizzy. She's a schoodle (schnauzer/poodle mix.) we took her on a hike to dog lake recently. 
 Last year when I took her and let her off lease she was a very naughty girl. She barked and chased other people and ran away from us. I was embarrassed and put her back on her leash

This time she she was much better. She stayed with us, didn't bark or chase other people or dogs, and came when we called. 
             She even posed for the camera
My husband Jon never wanted a dog, but he loves her
Me and Kizzy
She loved playing in the water.
She wanted the stick so bad, but it was a little too far out of her reach
She gave up on the stick
Wet dog

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Get Mad and Hit Someone

My son plays little league football and I enjoy watching his games. Though I've never been a big football fan, I'm becoming one. I love the sunny fall days and am starting to understand some of the game enough to kind of know what's going on. 

It's not like his first year of flag football anymore where I cheered when someone made a touchdown and my neighbor standing next to me said, "Um, that was the other team that made that touch down," and I said, "Oh, well, I cheer for both sides." 

A few weeks ago when my son's team was losing and he came to get some water on the sidelines, I went over and told him to get mad and hit someone. I turned around and saw a couple standing there and sheepishly said, "This is the only time it's okay to say that to your kid."


 Orange smile during snacks at halftime
 That's Bryce tackling the ball carrier.
 Another tackle.
 Yet another tackle.
Bryce intercepting the ball. Nah, I'm not proud or bragging or anything. Okay, maybe I am a little. Sorry.

On a side note: Last week one of the coaches from the team he played this week watched their game and asked me what we fed our boys, raw meet? Cuz they're so big. Nope. Just beets. Yep, they're the Beet Diggers. #2 worst name in the nation. Go Beet Diggers!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Writer's Cramp

My husband sent me this picture and said he thought it reminded him of me. No, I don't have whiskers and fur (in fact, I'm allergic to cats) but I do struggle with that blank page and first drafts. The only way I can deal with it and get through it is to start writing—anything, no matter how bad it is—and not edit as I go. 

I've been stuck on a revision of one of my novels now for a couple weeks. I keep overcoming one obstacle just to run into another. Part of the problem is that I wrote this novel without really planning it out or doing much outlining. So I've had to go back and do some plotting after the fact and keep making changes in the plot whenever I find part of it's not working anymore. 

In November I plan to write the first draft of a new novel for NanoWrimo, but I will do some plotting beforehand. I think my first draft will be much easier that way and it will need less revisions and not have to make so many major changes. 

Ways I deal with writer's cramp:

Take a walk
Do laundry or dishes
Go back and revise my outline
Listen to music related to my story
Look at pictures of places or people that resemble those in my book
Do some research on whatever I'm stuck on
Play my guitar

What are some ways you deal with writer's cramp? I'd love it if you'd share your ideas in the comments!